Feb. 25 program “E Pluribus Unum: Mythical America-Conversations & Complexities ” Next program of American Public Square at Jewell


The U. S. motto - E Pluribus Unum (out of many, one) - is the philosophical underpinning of the United States, but is this simply a mythical America we have embraced because it anchors our view of the world? What are the conflicting myths and memories that led to the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6?

On Thursday, Feb. 25, join American Public Square at Jewell for a free program, “E Pluribus Unum: Mythical America-Conversations & Complexities.” During this virtual program APS will explore the founding contradictions of our country, imagined communities, and who we are versus how we actually show up in the world. The hour-long program begins at 6 p.m. (central time).

This panel will feature several experts including:

Bakari Sellers: Author of The New York Times Bestseller “My Vanishing Country” and a CNN political commentator, was born and raised in South Carolina. Graduating from Morehouse College in 2005, where he served as student body president, Sellers went on to earn his law degree three years later from the University of South Carolina. In 2006, at just 22 years old, Sellers defeated a 26-year incumbent state representative to become the youngest member of the South Carolina state legislature and the youngest African American elected official in the nation. In 2014 he was the Democratic Nominee for Lt. Governor in the state of South Carolina. Bakari has worked for United States Congressman James Clyburn and former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin. He served on President Barack Obama’s South Carolina steering committee during the 2008 election. He was named to TIME Magazine’s 40 Under 40 in 2010 as well as 2014 and 2015 “The Root 100” list of the nation’s most influential African-Americans.

Nancy Isenberg: Best known for her 2016 New York Times bestseller “White Trash,” Isenberg is the T. Harry Williams Professor of History at Louisiana State University. She received her Ph. D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1990, Her first book, “Sex and Citizenship in Antebellum America”, examines the origins of the women’s rights movement. Isenberg has been featured on C-SPAN2 “Book TV,” and on various NPR programs over the years. She is a regular contributor to Salon.com and continues to write for a variety of national news outlets.

David Brog: Brog is the executive director of the Maccabee Task Force, president of the Edmund Burke Foundation and chairman of the Emergency Committee for America. Formerly, Brog served as the executive director of Christians United for Israel from its founding in 2006 until 2015. Brog worked in the United States Senate where he was chief of staff to Sen. Arlen Specter (Pennsylvania) and staff director of the Senate Judiciary Committee. A graduate of Princeton Universty and Harvard Law School, Brog has authored numerous books including “Reclaiming Israel’s History: Roots, Rights and the Struggle for Peace” and “In Defense of Faith: the Judeo-Christian Idea and the Struggle for Humanity”.

Bryan Le Beau : Recently retired as Provost from the University of Saint Mary, Le Beau currently serves as an adjunct history professor at Georgetown University and the University of Missouri - Kansas City. He is the author of several books on American cultural history. For seven years Le Beau hosted a national public radio program called “Talking History.”

The moderator for the APS program is David Von Drehle, a columnist for The Washington Post since 2017where he writes about national affairs and politics from a home base in the Midwest. Von Drehle spent a decade at Time magazine, where he wrote more than 60 cover stories as editor-at-large. During a previous stint at The Post, Von Drehle served as a writer and editor on the National staff, in Style, and at the Magazine. He is the author of a number of books, including the award-winning bestseller “Triangle: The Fire That Changed America.”

"We are excited to hear from such a well-versed, diverse panel as we challenge ourselves to take a fresh look at our country's founding principles and test whether one ideal can join us together as a nation,” said Claire Bishop, APS Executive Director.

The program is free, but registration is required at: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/7616131563461/WN_v8HkkoDdTbK7-gjL_YhXzg.

In addition to the panel discussion, audience members will be able to ask questions through Zoom’s Q&A function.

For more information about this or any of APS programs, please visit the organization’s web site at www.americanpublicsquare.org.


American Public Square at Jewell is a Kansas City-based nonprofit community organization working to improve the tone and quality of public discourse. Through its diverse events, programs and resources, APS offers a better understanding of divergent perspectives - a key step toward mutual respect, compromise and resolution of challenging issues.

APS accomplishes this by:

  • Convening groups and creating space for respectful dialogue on important topics
  • Educating community members about why engaging in this way is important and how to do it well
  • Engaging diverse segments of our society to ensure that multiple perspectives are explored

APS is about building communities with its focus on civility, facts and perspective. Join the conversation at www.americanpublicsquare.org.

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